I'm going out for a smoke, my eyes swimming in the white of the paper the doctor gave me. There's a man with silver hair sitting on the bench and whispering to the heavy silence. Here, in the back of the hospital, it seems like it's always snowing, so he's pointing at the small ashy snowflakes. They're flying right before having been born. There's nothing to do about it, they're terminally ill right after being born. I try to read to them while sitting next to the fireplace, this is what I like to call the incinerator. Then they go. Have you noticed how it's warmer outside when it's snowing? Must be the warmth of the souls that didn't get to live their childhoods.
(Translated by Liliana Popescu / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I / Corrected by Silvia Petrescu, coordinator of the translations)
Real Fiction is a collective project started in 2013 by Florin Piersic Jr. The concept of Real Fiction continued to exist as a Facebook group, after a volume of stories was published at Humanitas Publishing House. (In November 2021, the group has 7.500 members.) The authors write ultra-short stories, with the texts limited to 500 characters (in Romanian, so the length of the English translation might be a little different) - a flash-fiction exercise on a topic that changes almost daily. The group's coordinators are Florin Piersic Jr., Gabriel Molnar, Răzvan Penescu, and Luchian Abel. (Drawing by Adrian T. Roman)
Versiunea în română a acestui text se poate citi aici, în rubrica Ficțiuni Reale.